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Does the wife have the right to divorce?

Does a woman have the right to divorce (not seeking it as in ‘khula’, but giving it) her husband in Islam? At the time of my nikah, I gave my wife the right to divorce me, and she did so, by sending me papers with three written divorces on it. What will be the status of this decision on her part, as per Islam? People say that such a divorce isn’t valid, and I too, want to take her back into my home, as my wife.


My ordinary opinion on the issue is that the right to divorce is given by the Almighty to the husband, and not to the wife. The right to divorce given to the wife in our nikahnama is therefore void. The only thing a nikahnama can say is that the husband should give Talaq to his wife, if she so demands. That stipulation can sometimes be needed because some husbands tend to create unnecessary diffculties for their wives even when the latter are unwilling to live with them.
In your case, in my ordinary opinion, if your wife agrees to live with you and realizes that what she had done was wrong, you can continue to live as husband and wife after you feed sixty poor people, one meal each, which would enable you to expiate yourself for having violated a foolish promise. I am suggesting the stipulation of feeding sixty people on the basis of what is mentioned in Surah Mujadilah (58), verses 3 and 4. Although the Quran suggests sixty continuous fasts, I am assuming that that exercise would be difficult for you. However, if you both fast for sixty days running, except for menstruating days of your wife, that would be better for both of you before you meet physically. And Allah knows the best.